01 July 2009

Monthly Wrap Up: June 2009

Total Books and Current Status

Since January 1, I've read 53 books and left 2 books unfinished. I have posted 52 full reviews and 5 mini-reviews. I'm currently reading Every Last Cuckoo by Kate Maloy and I'm listening to the first in an urban fantasy series: A Kiss of Shadows by Laurell K. Hamilton.

What Did I Read?

Here's what I read in June. Click on the link to see my review; the letter in parentheses is my rating.

Starfinder by John Marco (B)
Fire Study by Maria V. Snyder (B-)
In the Sanctuary of Outcasts by Neil White (B+)
Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrea (B)
Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy by Gary D. Schmidt (A)
Home Game by Michael Lewis (B+)
The Painter from Shanghai by Jennifer Cody Epstein (B+)
Magickeepers by Erica Kirov (B)
Game On Diet by Krista Vernoff and Az Fercuson (B)
The Rossetti Letter by Christi Phillips (B)
A World I Never Made by James LePore (B-)

I read some solid books this month, and there is not a loser among them. Lizzie Bright, a middle reader book, was my only A, but I don't think you'd go wrong giving any of these books a try. Home Game is particularly charming, and I highly recommend it for new fathers.

Mini Reviews

I posted two mini reviews of books I read before I started blogging.

Ceepak Mysteries by Chris Grabenstein
About Alice by Calvin Trillin

Author Interviews

I conducted one "Three Questions with . . ." in June. If you missed it, see what I asked James LePore about his debut novel A World I Never Made.

Did I Complete Any Challenges? Join Any New Ones?

June was an interesting month for challenges.

I completed The Young Adult Challenge and The New Authors Challenge. I also completed two categories in The Library Thing 999 Challenge.

I failed the Spring Reading Thing: Actually I read more than the 10 books I signed up for, but I read only half the books on my list, so I'm calling it incomplete.

I joined two new challenges. One is the first challenge I've ever hosted: The Sookie Stackhouse Reading Challenge (you can still join!) and the other is The Everything Austen Challenge.

I also hosted a mini-challenge for the Maw Books Blog Bloggiestea.

What's New and What's Coming in July

I don't think I made any major changes to my blogging routine or my blog itself in June. I have cut back on my Weekly Link Round-Up because I'm finding it difficult to come up with unique links. The feature is not gone forever, but I'm backing off for the time being.

June was a month full of blog tours. It was fun, but I didn't seem to have much time for the books I really wanted to read, both backlist and new. I've scheduled only two blog tours for July, so I'm looking forward to a fun reading month.

I am going to be seriously examining the challenges I've signed up for and will be silently dropping some of them. I love challenges, but I signed up for too many last fall. Now I know better!

I also plan to review the Sony eReader that I won at BEA! I've been so busy with work and blog tours that I haven't even read my first book on it. I checked a book out from the library, but it already expired. So I'll start again this month. Sad isn't?

How did you do in June? Did you meet your reading goals? Did you complete a challenge? Are you caught up on your reviews? Are you making changes?


Nicole (Linus's Blanket) 7/1/09, 7:38 AM  

I haven't done my Items of Interest as much for the same reason, and I got sidetracked at BEA and lost momentum. I think mine will just pop up here and there.

You had a great month and some good reads. I love when it's like that. I just started reading the Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte. Really good. I'm trying t force myself to finish reading this one before I run downstairs and buy her other book. It's really, really hard to do that. You know me. :-p

Jen - Devourer of Books 7/1/09, 7:45 AM  

Great reading month. I'm excited to see how your challenge goes, my sister says she probably will join. She's hesitant about buying all those books, but I reminded her about the existence of the library (and the library near her is a GREAT one).

cindysloveofbooks 7/1/09, 8:51 AM  

You had a great month.

I was going to join the Sookie challenge but my library doesn't have the books and I have been thinking about buying the books. Not really sure yet though.

Wishing you a happy 4th of July.

Jess 7/1/09, 8:57 AM  

Fantastic job. Keep up all the good reading!

Unknown 7/1/09, 9:45 AM  

I think I signed up to too many challenges last year too! I haven't been very good at updating them so I don't know how close I am to completing them either! Hopefully I'll be doing OK though and do plan to finish them if I can.

Jenners 7/1/09, 11:15 AM  

Nice to have a month of solid reads! Yay! And I know what you mean about the links .. I had some trouble finding ones too that haven't already been linked to a lot!

Anonymous,  7/1/09, 11:40 AM  

You've had a busy month! I've seen lots of posts about your Sookie challenge. I'll be keeping my eye on it :)

Anonymous,  7/1/09, 12:01 PM  

I'll be interested in what you thought of the Sony eReader.

Being new to the book blogging circuit, I've not joined in on any challenges yet. Maybe after a few more months I'll look at what's been read and see if there are any challenges I can take retroactively. Now that sounds about right.

Louise 7/1/09, 1:38 PM  

Looks like you had a great month. I am looking forward to the Sookie challenge, and has packed book number two for an upcoming trip I have. Its a business trip, but I hope I will have the time to read at night :-)

Robin M 7/1/09, 3:14 PM  

You read some interesting books. I also silently dropped a few challenges because I overdid it. Don't blame you for reassessing. Look forward to hearing what you think about the ereader.

Lenore Appelhans 7/1/09, 6:28 PM  

I had a bunch of tours in June too. Normally I don't sign up for more than 1 a month, but I had 4 I think. That is 1/3 of my reading.

Darlene 7/1/09, 6:38 PM  

Wow, what a great month! I'm going to try to cut down on tours and such. It seems you end up not getting to read any of the other stuff you'd like to get to. Like my challenge books. Oh well, I hope July will be a great month for you.

Kristen 7/1/09, 9:39 PM  

I didn't do as complete a wrap-up post as you did but I did blog about my determination list ofr July (most of which will never come to pass--at least not in July). I too failed to complete the Spring Reading Thing Challenge but the two books I didn't finish in time are still in the mix and I *will* get them completed. I should set forth some more definite goals beyond the books I want to read this coming month but summer is such a hard time for me to stick to the goals. It's a lot like New Years' resolutions, I just don't commit over the summer months anymore!

Kim 7/1/09, 10:04 PM  

You read some great books. Personally I am a bit disappointed in my reading total for the year. Definitely a slower year for me than last year. I have also been re-evaluating my challenges and hoping to make better choices next year. I am having a hard time just dropping any as the books I have chosen for them are all books I really want to read anyway--but it doesn't leave room for all the new books I want to read right now!

Penny 7/1/09, 11:48 PM  

I borrowed your format for my monthly round-up. Hope you don't mind! :)

I find that the challenges that are perpetual I am getting done the fastest right now, and the ones with deadlines fall right by the wayside.

The Reading Momster 7/2/09, 12:00 AM  

You won a SONY reader! wow!!!!! I would LOVE to win something/anything like that :D

you had a LOVELY month! good going girlie!

Sassy Brit @ Alternative-Read.com 7/2/09, 8:28 AM  

What a good list of books for June, I think whether you pass or fail a challenge you are doing very well indeed.

Congratulations on winning an ebook reader!


Literary Feline 7/2/09, 10:50 AM  

I'm anxious to learn what you think of the e-Reader book once you've had a chance to test drive it. I saw one a couple of years ago at a book festival (I'm sure it's been updated since then) and thought it looked really neat.

I hope you enjoy the rest of your week, Beth. And good luck with your reading and challenges in July.

Melody 7/3/09, 2:36 AM  

Looks like you'd a great reading month, Beth! Way to go!!

Unknown 7/3/09, 9:38 AM  

I am an avid reader...or more correctly I take a lot of books out of the library, but don't read them all. Some are just not worth it. Some do not spark my interest. And others I go at with a vengence. The librarians asked me to sign up for their challenge. I wonder if knowing "I should review the books" takes the fun out of the process. Is that how kids feel?

Alyce 7/3/09, 11:59 AM  

It looks like you had a very busy month! I look forward to your review of the e-reader since I haven't heard very much about readers other than the kindle.

I understand what you mean about the challenges. My philosophy going into the challenges in the new year was that I wasn't going to stress. There are several that I joined for fun that I'm sure I won't finish, but figured if I do then that's great. If not then no big deal. :)

Anonymous,  7/4/09, 10:54 PM  

I have also read 53 books thus far in 2009. However, I completed 8 challenges. Let us know what you think of the eReader. I looked at one in a store last week but couldn't get excited about it. I like holding a book.

Michelle 7/5/09, 7:18 AM  

You are one busy lady miss thing! I don't know how you keep up with family, work and all this reading/blogging. Want to spread some of your magic my way? haha

I've actually joined a series of challenges in the past month. They seem (well most do anyway) pretty small in scope or long enough in time to be managable. I'll be interested to see how I fare since these are the first set I've ever done.

I'm looking forward to the fun of the Sookie Challenge!;)

Becca 7/5/09, 5:22 PM  

Great list of books for the month. I am doing the New Authors Challenge, too, but have not finished it quite yet. I'm doing a 999 challenge, but I may not finish that one.

I am having my first 2 blog tours in July, one on the 7th, and one on the 14th. I'd love it if you came by! I'm excited.

Anna 7/7/09, 12:25 PM  

Great month! I haven't done many book tours lately, but I have one coming up at the end of July.

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